By Richard Clarke
Gael Clichy has warned his Arsenal team-mates not to assume that Champions League qualification is assured just yet.
The task would have been completed on Saturday had Jermaine Jenas not struck a 94th-minute equaliser for Tottenham at White Hart Lane. As it stands Arsenal only require a point in their last three games to enter Europe's top competition for the 10th consecutive season. However they may even not need that if fifth-place Everton and Bolton, in sixth, fail to beat Manchester United and Chelsea respectively on Saturday.
It would seem a formality but Clichy is taking no chances. The 21-year-old defender wants his side to focus for the remainder of the season no matter what the situation.
"We were looking forward to getting the three points on Saturday so we could have been through to next season's Champions League," he told Arsenal.com. "But now everyone needs to be focussed for the next game against Fulham so we can qualify. We need to do that for ourselves and for our fans.
"Most of the time when you think you have done it that is when the worst can happen. So we have to be concentrated. When you play for a big club like Arsenal you have to play until the end. Even if we qualify before the Chelsea and Portsmouth games then we have to keep going in them for us and for the fans."
Copyright 2013 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 24 Apr 2007